The construction industry is one of the most robust employment factions in the world. In fact, according to OSHA, nearly 6.5 million people work at approximately 252,000 construction sites each day in our country. And needless to say, construction sites can be incredibly dangerous as the fatal injury rate is higher than the national average in this category for all industries.
So for National Safety Month, we wanted to provide some general tips for both employees and employers to ensure your construction site functions as safe as possible.
Fall Protection Safety
Failure to have proper fall protection is the most cited standard in the construction industry and is one of the leading causes of worker deaths in construction. Workers should be able to understand and identify potential fall hazards on the job and never work in an area where fall protection systems are needed but have not been installed. Additionally, employers are required to provide fall protection where necessary and educate employees on proper procedures.
Day in and day out, working on a scaffold is an enormous part of construction work. In fact, nearly 65% of all construction workers perform on tasks on scaffolds, where they can be exposed to falls, electrocutions and falling objects. Employees should always be wearing hard hats when working on, under or around a scaffold. Employees should never work on scaffolding covered in ice, water, or mud, and should always wear non-skid boots regardless of the conditions.
Eye & Face Safety
According to OSHA laws, safety glasses or face shields should be worn anytime foreign objects can cause damage to the eyes while working. So actions such as welding, cutting, grinding, nailing, working with concrete or even handling hazardous chemicals – eye and face protection should be worn and provided. Furthermore, employees should be familiar with Material Safety Data Sheets to ensure they understand the dangers of any hazardous chemicals being used. And naturally, employers should have an MSDS available for each dangerous substance.
According to ANSI/ISEA Z358.1 standards, proper emergency eyewashes or showers must be installed within 10-seconds travel time from a hazardous location. This could be complicated when a plumbing supply isn’t within proximity to provide water to emergency fixtures. In cases like these, a gravity fed portable eyewash is a perfect solution. The Speakman GravityFlo SE-8000 Emergency Tank Shower features a 528-gallon tank that supplies water to both an emergency shower and eyewash. This fixture requires no plumbing supply for activation and is 100% ANSI/ISEA Z358.1 certified. Learn more about the SE-8000 here.